Leslie Cheung

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Leslie Cheung
A wax figure of Cheung
PronunciationCheung Kwok-wing[1]
Cheung Fat-chung

(1956-09-12)12 September 1956
Died1 April 2003(2003-04-01) (aged 46)
Resting placePo Fook Hill, Sha Tin, New Territories
Alma materUniversity of Leeds
  • Singer
  • actor
  • songwriter
Years active1977–2003
Height1.74 m (5 ft 8+12 in)[2][3]
PartnerDaffy Tong (1997–2003)
Musical career
Also known asElder Brother (Chinese: 哥哥)[4][5][6]
Cheung Kwok-wing
Traditional Chinese
Simplified Chinese
JyutpingZoeng1 Gwok3-wing4
Cheung Fat-chung
Traditional Chinese
Simplified Chinese
JyutpingZoeng1 Faat3-zung1

Leslie Cheung Kwok-wing[A] (12 September 1956 – 1 April 2003), born Cheung Fat-chung, was a Hong Kong singer and actor. One of the most influential cultural icons in the Chinese world, Cheung was known for his debonair demeanor, flamboyant screen characters, and avant-garde, androgynous stage presence. Throughout his 26-year career, he released over 40 music albums and acted in 56 films.[7]

Born in Kowloon, British Hong Kong, Cheung studied in England since the age of 12 until he returned home in 1976. He garnered attention in 1977 when entering RTV's Asian Singing Contest and achieved popularity in 1984 with a hit single "Monica." Cheung is regarded as one of the founding fathers of Cantopop for defining the music genre in the 1980s.[8] He announced his "retirement" from music in 1989 and emigrated to Canada the following year, but returned to Hong Kong in 1994. His reemergence from the musical retirement in the late 1990s, particularly in his 1996 album Red, was marked by sonic experimentation and daring imagery.

In addition to music, Cheung achieved pan-Asian fame with such films as A Better Tomorrow (1986) and A Chinese Ghost Story (1987). He won the Best Actor at the 1991 Hong Kong Film Awards for his role in Days of Being Wild (1990), and became world-renowned for his performances in Farewell My Concubine (1993) and Happy Together (1997).

On 1 April 2003, Cheung, suffering from clinical depression, died by suicide by jumping off the 24th floor of the Mandarin Oriental hotel, Hong Kong. In 2010, he was voted third of CNN's most iconic musicians of all time, after Michael Jackson and The Beatles.[9]

Early life[edit]

Portrait of Leslie Howard, a British actor in tux and bowtie
Cheung's English name was inspired by the actor Leslie Howard (pictured) in Gone with the Wind.

Cheung was born in Kowloon, British Hong Kong, the youngest of 10 children in a middle-class Hakka family. His father, Cheung Wut-hoi, was a well-known tailor specialised in suits whose customers included Western celebrities such as film director Alfred Hitchcock and actors Marlon Brando and Cary Grant.[10][11] Despite his father's reputation in the fashion industry, Cheung was uninspired by the profession.[12] Cheung told many interviewers that he had an unhappy childhood,[13] feeling emotionally estranged from his father and siblings, and frequently witnessing arguments and fights in the household. He felt "depressed sometimes" and longed for affection from his parents who were absent most of the time in his childhood.[12] His father's abusive treatment of his mother had a lasting effect on Cheung's perspectives on marriage.[14] When Cheung's father married another woman, his emotional life further deteriorated. He was brought up by his grandmother, whom he was very close to. Cheung summed up his upbringing as a "silent resentment" with "nothing worth remembering", except for the death of his grandmother when he was in primary school, which was the "one thing that I do remember about my childhood."[12]

Cheung attended Rosaryhill School for secondary education in Hong Kong and, at age 12, enrolled at an independent boys boarding school Eccles Hall School Quideham near Norwich in England.[12][14] During his time at Rosaryhill, Cheung did poorly academically, but he excelled in the English language. He discovered a newfound interest in Western films and immersed himself in music, studying the original soundtrack of Romeo and Juliet.[12] When in England, he recalled that there were "racial problems", but managed to make friends. During weekends, he worked as a bartender and would sometimes do amateur singing at his relatives' restaurant in Southend-on-Sea. He came across the film Gone with the Wind and chose Leslie as his English name inspired by the actor Leslie Howard, feeling that "The name can be a man's or woman's, it's very unisex."[14]

Cheung attended the University of Leeds, where he studied textile management. After one year of study, in 1976, he returned to Hong Kong when his father became paralysed on one side of the body after a stroke. As the father wanted all of his children to be at home, Cheung abandoned his study and became a salesman for Levi's for a living. Cheung recalled that during this time, "I had no plans; there I was, feeling like I was hanging in the middle of nowhere."[15]



Upon returning to Hong Kong, Cheung went back to high school as a mature student and formed a band, where he was the lead singer, with his classmates. In May 1977, the band members signed up individually for RTV's Asian Singing Contest. Only Cheung remained until the final round of the Hong Kong division, where he finished as the first runner-up with a rendition of "American Pie".[16] He proceeded to the pan-Asian division, finishing fifth.[12] Soon after the competition, RTV offered Cheung a three-year contract as a second-rate actor for RTV.[17] He also signed with Polydor Records with hopes of releasing music albums.[12]

Cheung's career in show business did not take off immediately. His first film role was in Erotic Dream of the Red Chamber (紅樓春上春, 1978), a softcore porn production that features his bare buttocks.[13] His first two albums were solely recorded in English, and his third album, Lover's Arrow (情人箭, 1979) was recorded in Cantonese.[17] The albums failed commercially, and critics lambasted Cheung's voice as "chicken-like".[16] Cheung's first public performance at the 1977 Hong Kong Pop Folk Music Festival was booed off the stage by the audience.[12] He described his early days into show business as "full of uncertainty ... I remember well that my singing career at the early stage was like 'a person running into a rock', full of despair and obstacles."[16] Seeing little potential in Cheung, Polydor allowed him to depart on his own terms.[12]

1982–1989: Cantopop success and film crossover[edit]

Cheung signed with Capital Artists, a record label closely associated with the then-dominant television network TVB, in 1982. His first hit single, "The Wind Blows On" (風繼續吹), is a cover version of Momoe Yamaguchi's Japanese single "The Other Side of Goodbye" (さよならの向こう側). The song was successful on charts, revitalising Cheung's image as a Cantopop singer.[17] The titular album was Cheung's first to be certified gold by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) Hong Kong.[18] His second album with Capital, Craziness (一片痴), is a compilation of songs he recorded for TVB dramas.[19] The album was also a success, receiving a gold certification from the IFPI Hong Kong.[20] He continued his movie crossover with roles mostly in teenage films, and earned his first major recognition for starring in Nomad (1982).[21] While Cheung had already been a well-known actor with likeable personae in TVB productions, his role as a disillusioned teenager in Nomad foresaw his future reputation as an icon of rebel.[22] The role garnered Cheung a nomination for Best Actor at the 1983 Hong Kong Film Awards.[17]

The year 1984 was when Cheung achieved mass stardom. He released the hit single "Monica", a cover of the single by Japanese singer Kōji Kikkawa. The song topped charts in Hong Kong[23] and was one of the 10 gold-certified songs honoured at TVB's 1984 Jade Solid Gold Best Ten Music Awards[24] and the 1984 RTHK Top 10 Gold Songs Awards.[25] The song's upbeat dance production introduced a new musical trend to Cantopop, in addition to the traditional sentimental ballads that had dominated the scene.[23] Cheung's 1984 self-titled album, which included "Monica", was his first to be certified platinum by the IFPI Hong Kong and sold over 200,000 copies.[23][26] He starred in the TVB drama Once Upon an Ordinary Girl (儂本多情, 1984) and the film Behind the Yellow Line (1984). In the latter, he co-starred with actress Maggie Cheung and singer-actress Anita Mui. Both productions were commercially successful and put Cheung into the limelight as a prominent entertainer.[23] As Cheung's fame expanded, the media began to pit him against fellow singer-actor Alan Tam, as the two were the most successful male Cantopop singers at the moment. The publicised so-called rivalry contributed to Cantopop's booming sales and lasted until the end of the 1980s.[27]

Cheung's next albums with Capital were met with similar success. For Your Heart Only (為你鍾情, 1985) yielded the hit single "Wild Wind" (不羈的風), which was among the 10 gold-certified songs honoured at both TVB's Jade Solid Gold and RTHK Top 10 awards. The album also included songs Cheung recorded for TVB dramas, propelling his image as a romantic male lead.[23] His 1986 single "Who Feels the Same?" (有誰共鳴) won the Gold Song Gold Award, the distinction for the most popular song of the year, at TVB's Jade Solid Gold Awards. With this achievement, Cheung became an arguably undisputed royalty of Cantopop.[28] After the release of "Who Feels the Same?", he left Capital and joined Cinepoly Records,[23] under which his first album was Summer Romance (1987). The album was the best-selling Cantopop release of the year, earning seven times platinum certification from the IFPI Hong Kong and sold over 350,000 copies.[29] Its lead single, "Sleepless Night" (無心睡眠), won the Gold Song Gold Award at the 1987 Jade Solid Gold Awards.[23] The next two albums, Virgin Snow and Hot Summer, both were released in 1988 and sold well, receiving gold and platinum certifications from the IFPI Hong Kong.[23][26]

A turning point in his burgeoning acting career came when he was cast in John Woo‘s action film A Better Tomorrow (1986), in which he played a youthful and impulsive police officer torn between justice and his criminal brother.[21] The film, along with A Chinese Ghost Story (1987), propelled him to pan-Asian fame, especially in South Korea and Japan.[30] He then starred opposite his real life friend Anita Mui in Rouge (1988),[14][31] which consolidated the pair's reputation as the top Hong Kong entertainers.[32] Yiu-wai Chu, author of the book Hong Kong Cantopop: A Concise History (2017), noted that Cheung and Mui formed an "unprecedented" chemistry showcasing "mystic power of charisma", not only in films but also on stage performances together.[31]

Cheung embarked on a 23-date tour at the Hong Kong Coliseum in mid-1988, sponsored by Pepsi. The tour was a sold-out and accumulated over 250,000 spectators.[33] He also held several shows catering to the Chinese community in North America, visiting Atlantic City, Calgary, Toronto, and Vancouver.[34] In light of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and the upcoming handover of Hong Kong, many Hong Kongers emigrated to Western countries. Following suit, Cheung announced his "retirement" from singing and emigrated to Vancouver, Canada, in 1989.[35] Prior to his retirement, Cheung released three further albums under Cinepoly—Leslie '89, Salute, Final Encounter—all of which received platinum certifications from the IFPI Hong Kong.[26] He won Most Popular Male Artist twice, at the 1988 and 1989 Jade Solid Gold Best Ten Music Awards.[36][37] His "farewell concert tour", in support of the album Final Encounter, ran for 33 consecutive sold-out shows at the Hong Kong Coliseum.[31] Cheung donated profits of his 1989 album Salute to the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, which was named the Leslie Cheung Memorial Scholarship after his death.[38]

1990–1995: Music hiatus and major film roles[edit]

Wong Kar-wai at a film festival. He is wearing sunglasses and sports a buzzcut hairstyle in tuxedo and a bowtie
Cheung's role in Days of Being Wild, directed by Wong Kar-wai (pictured), earned him a Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actor.

After giving up singing, Cheung focused on his film career. He won the Best Actor at the 1991 Hong Kong Film Awards for his role in Wong Kar-Wai's Days of Being Wild (1990). He gained international acclaim for his role as a cross-dressing Peking opera actor in Farewell My Concubine (1993), which became the first Chinese film to win the Palme d'Or at Cannes.[39] According to Chen Kaige and Lu Wei, director and scriptwriter of the film, respectively, Cheung lost Best Actor by one vote because a Cannes jury member mistook Cheung for a woman and voted him for Best Actress.[40][41]

Although Cheung quit his singing career from 1989 to 1995, he composed more than ten songs during that time. In 1993, he won Best Original Movie Song Award from Golden Horse Film Festival for the theme song Red Cheek, White Hair for The Bride with White Hair (as a film score composer). In 1995, he wrote all three theme songs for the film The Phantom Lover (1995). As for songwriting, Cheung won four nominations for Best Original Movie Song Award at the Golden Horse Film Festival and Awards and two nominations for Best Original Film Song at the Hong Kong Film Awards.

1995–2003: Return to music and Passion Tour[edit]

Cheung in a white shirt performing, surrounded by bodyguards
Cheung at a 1997 concert

In 1995 Cheung signed a contract with Rock Records. The same year he released his comeback album, Beloved, winning the award of IFPI Best Selling Album.[42][43] Since his 1996 album Red, Cheung started a full-on collaboration with composer C. Y. Kong and lyricist Lin Xi, embracing a daring, self-reflective, and sexually ambiguous style of expression. Cheung's 1999 song "Left and Right Hand" (左右手) suggests at his sexuality and his 2000 song "I" (我), with two versions of lyrics in Mandarin and Cantonese by Lin Xi, is known as his come-out song.[44] In 2001, Cheung directed the music video for his song "Bewildered" (夢到內河) with the help of William Chang, the production designer of The Days of Being Wild. The video, featuring intimacy between Japanese ballet dancer Nishijima Kazuhiro and Cheung,[45] was banned by Hong Kong's public broadcaster TVB for promoting homosexuality; Cheung refused to edit the scenes out.[45]

Cheung was consecutively nominated for Best Actor at Cannes for Chen Kaige's Temptress Moon (1996) and Wong Kar-wai's Happy Together (1997). In 1998, he was a member of the jury at the 48th Berlin International Film Festival.[46] Cheung's last concert tour, Passion Tour, took place in Hong Kong and overseas from 2000 to 2001. He collaborated with fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier, who transformed Cheung "From Angel to Devil" in four costumes: the Angel, the Pretty Boy, the Latin Lover, and the Devil – denoting cross-cultural drag and focusing on Cheung's androgyny and bisexuality.[45] The Passion Tour broke attendance records throughout Asia, including a record for the first foreign artist to hold 16 concerts in Japan.[47] Although the concert was acclaimed in Japan, Korea, and Canada, it was panned in Hong Kong mainly for his gender-crossing.[45] Both Cheung and his agent Florence Chen attributed his later depression to the hostile reception from the Hong Kong media about the tour.[48][45] In 2011, CCTV-15 commented that the Passion Tour represented the highest standard of Chinese concerts in performance, art concept, costume props and audience response, and had never been surpassed.[45]


Cheung was a supporter of several charities concerning children's welfare. He was a patron of the Children's Cancer Foundation, a charity that cares for young children with cancer and their families. Cheung donated HK$1 million (US$128,000) in 1996 and launched five sets of RED cards to help raise funds for the Children's Cancer Foundation.[49] He was the first Cantopop star to launch a charity fundraising at a concert. In 1996, although he rarely sang in public at that time, he sang three theme songs from his films to raise money for the elderly.[50] For his 1997 concert at the HK Coliseum, Cheung set up a collection booth for the RED Card charity. Donations of HK$100 or above could obtain a set of cards. Cheung said, "I will lead the way, so I donated HK$1,000,000 to Hong Kong children's cancer fund in my own name." The concert raised more than HK$800,000, to which Cheung and his friends added more than HK$100,000, and made up a million Hong Kong dollars to donate to the cancer fund.[51] He was also a patron of the End Child Sexual Abuse Foundation (ECSAF) (護苗基金), founded by veteran actress Josephine Siao (蕭芳芳).

In 1999, at a party to raise relief funds in the aftermath of the Taiwan earthquake, Cheung participated in a fried rice tasting event. He donated HK$250,000 for a bowl of rice; this was matched by fan donations, bringing the total to HK$500,000.[52] In 2000, Sun Entertainment opened the "Star Second-hand Shop", where second-hand goods donated by celebrities were auctioned to raise money for the "Sun Love Fund". Leslie Cheung was known for his very good fashion sense and he was the first to donate three well-loved, carefully selected pieces to the auction.[53] Leslie also donated his beloved badminton racket to IDclub Taiwan, to be auctioned to raise money for the children's cancer fund.[54] In 1999 and 2000, he appeared in TVB charity shows to help raise funds for ECSAF, in which he was appointed a goodwill ambassador in 2002.[55] In 2003, Cheung donated HK$100,000 to the Seedling protection fund, who were holding a large-scale charity night on 12 March. He told his party guests to give him cash instead of presents, then he donated all of the money that he received to the fund.[56]

Personal life[edit]

Cheung's wax figure at Madame Tussauds Hong Kong

In 1977, during the filming of the RTV series Love Story, the then 20-year-old Cheung met and fell in love with his 17-year-old co-star, Teresa Mo (毛舜筠), and they began dating after finishing the series. In 1979, Cheung proposed to Mo, but his sudden proposal startled her and she began to distance herself from him. Although Cheung and Mo eventually broke up after the proposal and briefly lost contact, they remained close friends after they had reunited for the 1992 film All's Well, Ends Well.

Cheung later went into a brief relationship with actress Shirley Yim [zh] (雪梨), the younger sister of Michelle Yim, but they broke up in 1980, due to their incompatibility for each other's lifestyles. Cheung and Ngai Sze-pui (倪詩蓓), a Hong Kong model and actress whom he met on the set of ATV series Agency 24, were in a relationship for two years from 1981 to 1983.[57][58] In 1984, at the house of Albert Yeung, Cheung met Cindy Yeung (楊諾詩), the youngest daughter of Albert Yeung who had recently returned from Boston. Yeung was also a fan of Cheung and was seven years younger than him. They went out on several dates until Yeung returned to Boston. They continued their relationship through phone calls and letters, but would part ways in the following year, still remaining good friends.

Cheung and Daffy Tong Hok-tak (唐鶴德), godson of Cheung's mother, knew each other since childhood. They saw each other again in 1982 and began a romantic partnership lasting for 21 years. Tong paid Cheung's living expenses before Cheung was able to provide for himself. During his concert at the Hong Kong Coliseum in 1997, Cheung sang the love song “The Moon Represents My Heart” (月亮代表我的心) and dedicated it to his mother and Tong. This moment is seen as an official recognition of Cheung's relationship with Tong, making him one of the first public figures in the Chinese world to come out.[45][59]

In an interview in 1992, Cheung stated that "My mind is bisexual. It's easy for me to love a woman. It's also easy for me to love a man, too" and "I believe that a good actor would be androgynous, and ever changing."[45] In 2000, Cheung talked about his love life: "In terms of lovers, I think I can be a better friend than a lover. Because I am a workaholic. To share my romance, that person has to compromise something."[60] In a 2001 interview with Time magazine, Cheung said: "It's more appropriate to say I'm bisexual. I've had girlfriends. When I was 22 or so, I asked my girlfriend Teresa Mo to marry me."[61]

Death and legacy[edit]

Leslie Cheung leapt from the 24th floor of the Mandarin Oriental hotel (right)

Cheung died by suicide on 1 April 2003 at 6:43 pm (HKT).[62] He leapt from the 24th floor of the Mandarin Oriental hotel, located in the Central district of Hong Kong Island.[63] He left a suicide note saying that he had been suffering from depression.[64][65][66][67][68][69]

3rd anniversary of Cheung's death, in Central, Hong Kong, 2006
"Miss You Much Leslie" exhibition at Times Square (Hong Kong), April 2013

"Depression! Many thanks to all my friends. Many thanks to Professor Felice Lieh-Mak (麥列菲菲) (Cheung's last psychiatrist). This year has been so tough. I can't stand it anymore. Many thanks to Tong Tong (nickname for Cheung's boyfriend Daffy Tong). Many thanks to my family. Many thanks to Sister Fei (沈殿霞). In my life I have done nothing bad. Why does it have to be like this?"

— Leslie Cheung's suicide note (translation)

After the jumping, an informant told police that "someone fainted on the roadside", resulting only ambulances arrived at the scene and did not attract a large number of reporters, thus there were no photos of the scene.[70]

The news of Cheung's death shocked the Chinese community worldwide.[71][72][73][74][75][76] The day after Cheung's death, his partner Daffy Tong confirmed that Cheung had been suffering from clinical depression and had been seeing Professor Felice Lieh Mak for treatment for almost a year. He also revealed that Cheung had previously attempted suicide in November 2002.[77]

Despite the epidemic of SARS and the WHO's warning on traveling to Hong Kong, tens of thousands attended Cheung's memorial service on 7 April 2003, including celebrities and fans from mainland China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Southeast Asia, the United States, and Canada. Cheung's funeral was held on 8 April 2003. Three of Cheung's friends, director Tsui Hark, lyricist James Wong, and singer Jacky Cheung, delivered eulogies. Tsui Hark, Jacky Cheung, Stanley Kwan, Eddie Lau, Tony Leung Ka-Fai, Lin Xi, Lau Chun-Ho, and Law Kin-Kei served as pallbearers. Cheung was buried in Po Fook Hill, Shatin. His final album, Everything Follows the Wind (一切隨風), was released three months after his death.

Taiwanese writer Li Ao claimed in a 2003 TV program that Cheung died by suicide due to AIDS, but the accuracy of this statement has been questioned.[78] In a 2012 interview, Cheung's eldest sister, Ophelia, stated Cheung was diagnosed with clinical depression caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain.[79] She mentioned that reporters were frequently found outside her brother's home, hampering his ability to visit his doctor. Thus, he would come over to her house to consult with his doctor. He would ask his sister, "Why am I depressed? I have money and so many people love me." He was reluctant to take medication for his depression.[80]

In 2013, Cheung became the first contemporary celebrity to be included in the Cihai.[81] In 2018, 55383 Cheungkwokwing was named in memory of Leslie Cheung. The main-belt asteroid was discovered by Bill Yeung at the Desert Eagle Observatory in 2003.

Many memorial events were held over the years since Cheung's passing, notably the memorial concerts in 2003, 2008, 2013, and 2023 organized by Cheung's agent Florence Chan. In addition, Cheung's fans set a Guinness World Record in 2013 for the largest origami crane exhibition by creating 1,956,921 origami cranes, a tribute to his birth date.[82] On the other hand, the proliferation of memorial events has attracted scrutiny and doubts over commercialization and opacity of revenues.[83] Florence Chan faced criticism in 2013 for her much-hyped revelation of an important secret about Cheung at the year's memorial concert, which turned out to be a dream she had about Cheung telling her he could finally rest. [84][85] Chinese writer Han Songluo commented then: “In the ten years of commemorating Leslie Cheung, what we observe is an exhaustive Leslie Cheung Commemorating Contest, where the focus is not on commemoration but on novelty. It must feature new information, new developments, and new perspectives.”[86] In 2023, concerns about overexploitation were raised again when two memorial concerts, organized by Chan and Universal Music, Cheung's agent and agency, respectively, took place on the same day, April 1, in Hong Kong, featuring separate groups of celebrities covering his songs.[87]

Awards and nominations[edit]

RTHK Top 10 Gold Songs Awards (十大中文金曲)[edit]

Year Category Recipient Result
1984 Top 10 Gold Songs "Monica[88]" Won
1985 "Wild Wind" (不羈的風) Won
1986 "Past Love" (當年情) Won
1987 "Sleepless Night" (無心睡眠) Won
Best CD Summer Romance Won
Sales Award (Best-Selling Album of the Year) Won
1988 Top 10 Gold Songs "Silence is Golden" (沉默是金) Won
"Don't Need Too Much" (無需要太多) Won
IFPI Award Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won
1999 Top 10 Gold Songs "Left Right Hand" (左右手) Won
Golden Needle Award (金針獎) Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won
2000 Top 10 Gold Songs "Big Heat" (大熱) Won
2002 Silver Jubilee Award Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won

Jade Solid Gold Best Ten Music Awards (十大勁歌金曲頒獎典禮)[edit]

Year Category Recipient Result
1983 Top 10 Gold Songs "Wind Blows On" (風繼續吹) Nominated
1984 "Monica" Won
1985 "Wild Wind" (不羈的風) Won
1986 "Past Love" (當年情) Won
"Who Resonates With Me" (有誰共鳴) Won
Gold Song Gold Award (金曲金獎) Won
1987 Top 10 Gold Songs "Sleepless Night" (無心睡眠) Won
Gold Song Gold Award (金曲金獎) Won
1988 Top 10 Gold Songs "Silence is Golden"(沉默是金) Won
"Closer" (贴身) Won
Most Popular Male Artist (最受歡迎男歌星) Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won
1989 Top 10 Gold Songs "Starting from Zero" (由零開始) Won
Most Popular Male Artist (最受歡迎男歌星) Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won
1999 Honours Award (榮譽大獎) Won
2000 Four Channel Award (Best Album of the Year) Untitled Won
Honours Award (榮譽大獎) Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won

Other music awards[edit]

Year Award Category Recipient Result
1988 Ultimate Song Chart Awards Ultimate Male Artist Gold Award Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won
1989 Won
IFPI Award Side Face (側面) Won
1999 Ultimate Song Award (No. 1 Song of the Year) "Left Right Hand"(左右手) Won
Metro Radio Hit Music Awards Metro Radio Hit Song of the Year Won
Metro Radio Top 10 Hit Songs Won
2000 CCTV-MTV Music Honours Asia's Biggest Superstar Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won
2001 Chinese Pop Music Media Awards Best Male Singer Won

Hong Kong Film Awards[edit]

Year Category Film Result
1983 Best Actor Nomad (烈火青春) Nominated
1988 A Better Tomorrow 2 (英雄本色2) Nominated
Best Original Film Song A Chinese Ghost Story (倩女幽魂) Nominated
1989 Best Actor Rouge (胭脂扣) Nominated
1991 Days of Being Wild (阿飛正傳) Won
1994 Best Original Film Song The Bride With White Hair (白髮魔女傳) Nominated
1995 Best Actor He's a Woman, She's a Man (金枝玉葉) Nominated
Best Original Film Song Won
1996 The Phantom Lover (夜半歌聲) Nominated
1997 Best Actor Viva Erotica (色情男女) Nominated
Best Original Film Song Who's the Woman, Who's the Man? (金枝玉葉2) Nominated
1998 Best Actor Happy Together (春光乍洩) Nominated
2003 Inner Senses (異度空間) Nominated

Golden Horse Awards[edit]

Year Category Film Result
1991 Best Leading Actor Days of Being Wild (阿飛正傳) Nominated
1993 Best Original Song The Bride With White Hair (白髮魔女傳) Won
1994 He's a Woman, She's a Man (金枝玉葉) Nominated
1995 The Phantom Lover (夜半歌聲) Nominated
1996 Best Leading Actor Temptress Moon (風月) Nominated
Best Original Song Nominated
Who's the Woman, Who's the Man? (金枝玉葉2) Nominated
1997 Best Leading Actor Happy Together (春光乍洩) Nominated
2000 Double Tap (鎗王) Nominated
2002 Inner Senses (異度空間) Nominated

Other film awards[edit]

Year Award Category Film Result
1991 Asia Pacific Film Festival Best Actor Days of Being Wild (阿飛正傳) Nominated
1993 Cannes Film Festival Best Actor Farewell My Concubine (霸王別姬) Nominated
1994 Hong Kong Film Critics Society Awards Best Actor Ashes of Time (東邪西毒) Won
Japan Film Critics Society Farewell My Concubine Won
Venice Film Festival Best Actor Ashes of Time Nominated
1996 Cannes Film Festival Best Actor Temptress Moon (風月) Nominated
1997 Cannes Film Festival Best Actor Happy Together (春光乍洩) Nominated

Ming Pao Power Academy Awards[edit]

Year Category Recipient Result
2000 Honorary Award Leslie Cheung (張國榮) Won
Outstanding Male Singer Won
2002 Best Actor Inner Senses (異度空間) Won



See also[edit]



  1. ^ traditional Chinese: 張國榮; simplified Chinese: 张国荣; Jyutping: Zoeng1 Gwok3-wing4


  1. ^ "Leslie Cheung profile". Archived from the original on 18 November 2016. Retrieved 10 November 2016.
  2. ^ "Leslie Cheung". IMDb. Archived from the original on 26 July 2021. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  3. ^ "張國榮的愛情故事 (Leslie Cheung's Romance Story) - Cheung claimed he was 5 ft 8.5 in tall". Leslie Cheung Cyberworld. Retrieved 7 April 2023.
  4. ^ Lisa Oldham Stokes (2007). Historical Dictionary of Hong Kong Cinema. Scarecrow Press. p. xxvii. ISBN 978-0-8108-5520-5.
  5. ^ "Sina Entertainment News" (in Chinese). Xinhua News Agency. 3 April 2008. Archived from the original on 4 November 2015. Retrieved 28 March 2012.
  6. ^ "Sina Entertainment News". Sina Corp. Archived from the original on 20 June 2021. Retrieved 28 March 2012.
  7. ^ Leung 2008, p. 85.
  8. ^ 李雯蕊. "'Elder brother': Leslie Cheung remembered". www.chinadaily.com.cn. Retrieved 2 April 2024.
  9. ^ "Michael Jackson: Your number one music icon - CNN.com". www.cnn.com. Retrieved 4 April 2024.
  10. ^ Michel Ciment, Hubert Niogret, "Interview of Leslie Cheung", Positif no. 455/1999, Berlin, conducted on 21 February 1998
  11. ^ Shima 1999.
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i Cheung, Leslie (1985). Leslie Cheung Autobiography (radio programme) (in Cantonese). Commercial Radio Hong Kong. The autobiography was also included in the compilation album History.His-Story (2004), Capital Artists.
  13. ^ a b Cribb 2003, p. 95.
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Further reading[edit]

  • Simon Broughton, Mark Ellingham, World Music Volume 2: Latin and North America, Caribbean, India, Asia and Pacific, BBC Radio, 2000, ISBN 1-85828-636-0
  • Kei Mori, "夢想之欠片 (Broken pieces of dreams)", Renga Shyobo Shinshya Co Ltd, Tokyo, Japan, 2004, ISBN 4-902603-55-1
  • Chitose Shima, "Leslie Cheung Interview", All About Leslie, p25–40, Sangyo Henshu Center Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan, 1999, ISBN 4-916199-10-3
  • Chitose Shima, Time of Leslie Cheung, Sangyo Henshu Center Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan, 2004, ISBN 4-916199-59-6
  • Lisa Oldham Stokes (2007). Historical Dictionary of Hong Kong Cinema. Scarecrow Press. pp. 76–79. ISBN 978-0-8108-5520-5.
  • City Entertainment Editor Committee, Leslie Cheung's Movie World 2 (1991–1995), City Entertainment, Hong Kong, 2006, ISBN 962-8114-98-0
  • De Hui, Leslie Cheung's Movie Life I, II, Shanghai Bookstore Publishing House, Shanghai, 2006, ISBN 7-80678-557-4.
  • Yingjin Zhang; Zhiwei Xiao (2002). Encyclopedia of Chinese Film. London & New York: Routledge. p. 118. ISBN 0-203-19555-8.
  • Helen Hok-Sze Leung, "In Queer Memory: Leslie Cheung (1956-2003)" In "Undercurrents Queer Culture and Postcolonial Hong Kong", UBC Press, Vancouver, 2008, p. 85 -105, ISBN 978-0-7748-1469-0

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Hong Kong Film Awards
Preceded by Best Actor
1991 for Days of Being Wild
Succeeded by
Hong Kong Film Critics Society Awards
Preceded by
Best Actor
Succeeded by
RTHK Top 10 Gold Songs Awards
Preceded by Golden Needle Award
Succeeded by
Jade Solid Gold Best Ten Music Awards
Preceded by Most Popular Male Artist
1988, 1989
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Honours Award
1999, 2000
Succeeded by
Ultimate Song Chart Awards
Preceded by
Ultimate Male Artist Gold Award
1988, 1989
Succeeded by
Ming Pao Power Academy Awards
Preceded by
Honorary Award
2000 (& Andy Lau)
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Outstanding Male Singer
Succeeded by
Preceded by Outstanding Actor in Film
2002 for Inner Senses
Succeeded by